Thursday, October 27, 2016

How To Move On: The Unusual Tips

Forgetting that special someone who had been part of your life is never easy. The longer you have been together the more painful it is. Worst if you are the one being  left out.

But here are few tips that can help you jumpstart on a brand new beginning:

Women typing on the notebook

On your social media: Most common tip in moving on the internet might teach you is to unfollow or block that person. Of course, who wants to see updates of him/her having a good time or worst changing his/her profile pic in facebook with the new one? None. But you see, the more you get to see this, the more you get immuned and be reminded that he/she is not worth your while. It’s okay to delete your pictures there though.🙂
Woman With Black Dress Using a SmartphoneOn your phone: Blocking or deleting his/her number. Hell, what is the point in all of that if you memorize it? Just let it stay there until you get tired of looking it. You will surely have the impulse of messaging that person once in a while but just be resilient. If you fail, then what now? You might be contacting that person yet it won’t change the fact that you broke up already. Send 10,000 “Hi’s” until you get so frustrated and get the hang of no message from him/her.
adventure, backpack, backpackingOn your daily activities: You get to think of that person too much because you have so much spare time in doing it. Go get a hobby you can think of. Get loads of books if you happen to be a reader. Jam-pack your hard drive with movies if you are a junkie. Go solo backpacking! Learn guitar! Enrol free online courses at Coursera! Join organizations in line of your interest! Blah balah blah!
On your new relationships: They say getting a new apple of your eye is the best way to get over someone you treasured. For your sake and that of your future rebound, please don’t do it. It is just a waste of time, money and effort. Savour being single and jump into it when you are ready.
On being sentimental: Feeling like all the sad songs were meant to be written for you? Seeing someone who is a carbon copy of him/her in manners? Watching that movie you watched on your first date? Yeah, that is very normal. Just remember that you are not the only person going through it. And really, with the right attitude it won’t kill you. Always think you deserve the best. J

All photos from

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Taking the #PerfectOOTD with OPPO F1s

I could spell I-N-S-E-C-U-R-I-T-Y at the age of 5. Trust me, you do not want to grow up being compared to your beautiful sisters. I have lumber jack shoulders, a face as round as the yahoo messenger icon and a not so impressive height.  On my teenage years, I hate wearing tight clothes because it emphasized how ungifted I am on the chest area. I am skinny and have the most unproportionate body. Every morning, I stare at the mirror and silently whisper, “I hate myself”.

Fast forward. College. With the help of the people I surround with and the ideologies I started to embrace, I finally made amend of my imperfections. Like really, I had to accept who I am or else I had to work my ass off to earn money for surgery. Kidding, the latter is not even an option.

Amidst all these struggles within, I had a dirty little secret.  I love fashion. I daydream of modeling the clothes I created. Geez, God knows how obsess I am with Project Runway, America’s Next Top Model, and all other shows that has to do with runways, models, and fabric. I go gaga when I enter boutiques trying to mentally mix-and-match the stuff inside.

Taking the perfect outfit of the day is very important to me because I really wanted to express myself on the clothes I wear. For me, it is art. But one of the major challenges I had to face on this quest is being uncomfortable in front of the camera. Yes, I learned to embrace the blotches of my physical appearance but there is still this small voice of insecurity that is holding me back.

What will the world say if I post this photo? Will they notice how flat-chested I am? Will they ridicule me because I don't even look like a model? Will they hate the entirety of my look because it does  not scream sophistication and glamour which is the stereotype of fashion?  
And then it dawned unto me. What now if they hate everything about me? Or maybe, I was just creating this hate thing in my head? What would I lose if I try it? Thanks to the support of my family, I am now getting out of my comfort zone. I can now smile and pose in front of the camera with ease because I know the person behind it loves me unconditionally no matter how I look. Yes, my family members are my photographers.

It worried me at first because I really am not into makeup. And according to most of the fashion blogs I follow, good make up must go with your fashion. I am just thankful that OPPO F1s hosts plug-ins and filters that I can play with to have the endless opportunity of sharing creative photos. It really is a savior because I am no fan of makeup. All you can find in my mini kit is a facial moisturizer and a lip tint.

Also, I am just an ordinary working student. I fear that the fashion community would oust me if I could not afford signature clothes. But then again, for me, if you really are passionate about it, you can pull off fashion without splurging too much. Fashion is not expensive. Fashion is a challenge to be creative.

I am still continuously building that confidence to dress, express, and share. With the journey, I came to realize that the formula for a perfect OOTD shot is an attitude that you can pull off everything and a camera that supports your goal like OPPO F1s.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Exploring Tinago Falls, Iligan City: Easy and Budget Friendly

It was really a loss not exploring Tinago Falls when I was yet a student. How could I miss that unfathomable cold
blue water that is one of the most visited places in Iligan City when I was just more than an hour away from it? Nevertheless, I had an awesome date with my mudra and bro there just  months ago. The day after my bro's grad we decided to have an instant picnic and it was one of the best getways I ever had. Iba talaga pag pamilya kasama!

All About Food

If you are just from the area and want a quick plunge, I think grabbing few chichirias and soda will do. However, since I am a glutton (sometimes) and I did not want to starve my family, my brother and I went to the city market for ready-to-eat foods. I was very happy about the fresh fruits at very affordable prices. I bought a large slice of jackfruit for just P20! For those who want to do some hardwork, you can buy fish and meat and grill them at the area.

The Transportation

From Iligan City, you can hop on a jeep going to Buru-un. Fare is just P15. Ask the driver to drop you at the junction going to Tinago Falls. From there, you can take a motorcylce for P25. For convenience, we hailed a cab that brought us to where we needed to start walking down to the falls. We only paid P250 and I thought that was fair enough. Be sure to talk to your driver for the fare before jumping in.

The Experience

The majestic Tinago Falls is tucked in a deep ravine. On the way down the 600 steps, I took
note of not getting too drunk because I wanted to get home with intact ribs. It is steep. I had difficulty going down. I could not imagine going back up.

I am not fan of swimming but this one inflicted me with very swollen arms because my brother and I keep on wading for the rest of the afternoon. I don't know how to swim so the I guess it must be life jacket that gave me so much confidence. We also tried riding the balsa and it literally had stopped my breathing. I was overwhelmed by the water falling down with such intensity and it drove me crazy how to get away from it. I've almost drowned twice and it drew that feeling back.

The Disadvantage

First thing that really turned me off is the unpleasant smell of the water. I do not know how to put it but it smells malangsa sometimes especially if you stay just on the rocks. Second thing is the comfort room. I wish that some of fees collected will go to the construction of a better rest room. I mean, you have to pay P5 everytime you use it but you have to make do of a cubicle that has overflowing water and a door that threatens to fall on you any minute because it is damaged. Most of the cottages had no roof as well so it is really hard to keep your things dry if it rains.


Guide  - P150 (My brother is frequent to this place so we really didn't need any tour guide. However, people insisted and mudra favored for it because we will have someone to watch for our things and take our photos) 
If you are on a budget
Cab Fare (Iligan City - Tinago) - P250
Motorfare (Tinago - Junction) - P25
Jeep Fare (Junction - Iligan City) - P15
Environmental fee - P70
Life jacket - P30
Food - Depends on you

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Four Mountains In A Day (Climbing Mt Marami, Mt Buntis, Mt Nagpatong and Pico De Loro In One Day)

“Ruth di ba sabi ko sayo walang baguhan? Baka di niya kayanin!” 

Once upon a summer, I was invited to a mountain climbing. As an adventure junkie, I went for a go in a heartbeat. It was my first official climb. Not to mention my first four mountains in a day climb. That was one of the most exhausting experiences in my entire life. But one of the most valuable experiences that made me better understand life itself.

At 2 am, we were on our way to the first peak to conquer, Mt. Marami. Meeting my fellow climbers looking so professional about this thing had me worried if my 2 bars of Snickers and a liter of water would get me through the day. I was even ready to bail out when one of the organizers said to the person who invited me, “Ruth,di ba sabi ko sayo walang baguhan”.

I felt backing out. Why go through this when I could sleep and read the whole day? But that person told them I can do it and winked at me. My mind argued. How dare is she to believe I can do it? We are talking about four mountains here! But on one note, what would I lose if I do this except for few calories. I decided to stay. They already had my registration anyway so Mr. Giving Up you are not an option. That person believed that I can do it. And when I signed up to this I also thought I could do so.

The first 30 minutes of the trek was fine but as hours passed it was killing me. My sweat trickled from anywhere and I panted like a dog. Hopelessness seeped in upon hearing them we were not even half of the trek. I was hungry and thirsty and starting to think if my colleagues were on drugs. Like how could they walk normally and steadily while my heart was ready to explode? Ah, pain… Endless pain…

Then I found myself standing before a crystal clear calm stream.  I was staring at myself and asked, why do I keep on whining? Pain is part of the journey. Can I just enjoy this? I looked around realized how the morning sun could be so beautiful when clouds and fogs try to hide it. There were wild flowers silently screaming to be noticed. Climbers who were willing to share their stories. It made the climb easier. Sometimes in life, we are just too itchy to get something done that we failed to notice and be enthralled by the simple things that come along the way.

When you are about to conquer the peak, the ascent could be very rocky it will hurt your hands. The path is getting narrower you have to look closely. You have to grip well in order not to fall. You have to be mindful every step of the way until you get there. Thirst, starvation, wounds, scars, they are just few of the pains to deal with but they won’t matter when you finally stand at the peak, feeling on top of the world as you savor the earth’s splendor. No pain, no gain, they say. Same goes with life and successes. You have to work for it. And you just don’t give up.

Upon descent, the summer sun was hostile hot it felt like my head was to be ripped off. I barely had any water left and I was tired my surrounding started to blur. I walked and stumbled, walked and stumbled for eternity. My exhaustion tricked me to give up and just when I was about to, I caught a glimpse of our jump-off site. Funny it is with life. You won’t really know if you are approaching the finish line when you focus on pain too much. But if you keep going, you will be surprised it will be over. And it pays when you just don’t give up.

And there one mountain down, three more to go and it was already 12 midnoon. Next stop, Mt. Buntis. Everyone was eager to take over the next peak except me. Dehydration had me down. I wanted to push through. Prove these people this rookie can do it but my feet were not just up for the challenge. Swallowing my pride, I told them, I’d wait at the van. People call it quitting. I call it being smart. I could feel my system dying. If I don’t listen to it, I could be courting more serious trouble.

Accepting failure in life is never easy. Most especially if you are trying to please spectators. But in the end, I should know that we are talking about my journey here and not theirs. Yes, I made a pass in climbing this peak. I’ve learned that giving up is not a bad thing at all. Giving up when you know you cannot do it at the moment because of circumstances you are not in control of is fairly okay.

It was already dark when we reached the third mountain. This time, I felt better and was back on the challenge. Mt Nagpatong was an easy climb. This taught me that after every fall, you just keep going and you’ll be stunned how things unfold.

By 8 pm, we arrived at the last peak, Pico de Loro. My mind, body and soul was morose I could not take anymore mountain. I decided not to climb it. Almost all of us did except the four hardcore mountaineers. I was not ashamed of it anymore. And adage could say he sky is the limit but reality is, at some point, you need to acknowledge constraints that are way beyond your control and seek the best option. You can always get back into it the next time. You just don’t simply give up when you intend to try it again next time when you are capable and ready to do so.

Life is full of rocky mountains to climb. It sure is to be thrown with tons of pains, struggles and bottleneck the most tempting to do is give up—our dreams, our goals, our passion. Just keep going. But if it is way too much and you could not take it anymore, give yourself a break. Learn to rest. Learn to breathe. It is part of not giving up.

Basic Speech No. 10
Pioneer Trailblazers Toastmasters Club

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Affordable Summer Spree at Bohol Island

At the infamous Chocolate Hills.
For two years now, I've been able to set foot in Bohol during summer time. I've been to quite a number of provinces in the Philippines and this city is one of my personal favorites because it has so much to offer. From the picture perfect Chocolate Hills, scenic falls, and white sand beaches to mouth-watering seafood.
Strolling at Panglao Beach in sneakers.
Yeah, I know, I know!

Thrift Experiences


As a budget traveler, my mantra is always to spend less and experience more. As we head out from the airport, barkers offered us a cab for P600. The fare price did not make any sense to me because going to our accommodation will probably take us 5-8 minutes. Had we known how to get to there and had the sun been friendly, we might opt to walk. In the end, we hailed a tricycle for P8 each. What a save!

There a number tour offerings here according to your budget. Tricycle drivers offered us P2500 for a day tour. There are also SUVs who do touring for P1500-P3000 depending on the tour specifications. If you are alone and hiring one could be so pricey, go commute. It is not as hassle as deemed.


On my first visit, I stayed at a hotel (I forgot the name) for more or less P1500 per night. The rooms were clean and they have a very relaxing ambiance. I thought that was the most affordable I could get. El Portal Inn is way affordable. It only costs P900 per night. For barkada escapade, they have P1200 room good for 3 persons already. The linens could be a bit shabby looking but were clean and staffs are approachable.

All About That Food

Golden Cowrie's grilled squid, mango salad,
spring rolls and baked tahong.
I am very picky when it comes to food. I always wanted something that is 'lutong-bahay'. On our first day, we had lunch at Golden Cowrie. This restaurant has a wide array of Filipino food to fill my growling tummy. This island really screams teeming seafood. I mean, you can have a baked tahong for more or less P250 that you will get the metro for double or triple price? I am just so amazed! For vegetarians, their adobong talong is love. There is no meat on it but it's hella delicious. Gee, my mouth is watering just the mere thought of it.

Bee Farm's complimentary appetizer, steamed fish,
organic avocado ice cream, halang-halang,
and grilled fish with organic garden salad.
For dinner, we went to Bee Farm. A restaurant that offers organic food. It is a bit pricey for a budget traveler but the food is worth it. No not just worth it. It is hella good too. The serving is very generous. I had grilled fish with organic garden salad on the side. I am not really a salad person but I was curious to try some. For fish lovers, try their steamed fish! For desert, chill yourself with organic ice cream. It comes in avocado, ginger, langka, and malunggay flavour.

Good food with good people.
On our second night, my colleague’s friend, a local there, brought us to Abi's Restaurant. I never imagine buffet dinners could be so affordable. Imagine dining with unlimited grilled fish,  baked tahongs, pork adobo, squid adobo, fresh fruits and many many others for just P250.